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International Trade and Core Labor Standards: A Survey of the Recent Literature

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  • Drusilla K. Brown

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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to provide a critical review of the current debate and recent literature on several aspects of international core labor standards. We attempt to address two basic issues. One strand of the literature examines the role that international trade plays in mediating international differences in wages, levels of development, labor law and cultural practices. In this context, we examine the theory and evidence concerning the impact of differing labor standards for international trade and whether such trade has implications for the income distribution in OECD countries. We also consider the impact of heterogeneous cross-country labor standards and practices for legal institutions relating to labor standards and industrial relations. In particular, we are interested in whether cross-country differences in labor standards must inevitably give rise to a race to the bottom in labor protections and what any consequent decline in standards might imply for broader ... L’objet de cet ouvrage est de soumettre à une analyse critique les arguments avancés dans le débat en cours sur plusieurs aspects de la question des normes internationales fondamentales du travail, ainsi que les études qui leur ont récemment été consacrées. Deux thèmes essentiels y sont traités. Une partie de ces études s’intéresse à l’influence qu’exercent les échanges internationaux sur les differences existant entre pays quant aux salaires, au niveau de développement, à la législation du travail et aux pratiques culturelles. Dans cette optique, nous examinons les théories et les faits observés concernant les effets de la diversité des normes du travail sur les échanges internationaux, en tentant de déterminer si ces derniers ont une incidence sur la répartition du revenu dans les pays de l’OCDE. Nous étudions également l’impact que peuvent avoir des normes du travail et des pratiques en matière d’emploi variables d’un pays à l’autre s’agissant des institutions juridiques ...
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Suggested Citation

  • Drusilla K. Brown, 2000. "International Trade and Core Labor Standards: A Survey of the Recent Literature," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0005, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
  • Handle: RePEc:tuf:tuftec:0005
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    Cited by:

    1. Donado, Alejandro & Wälde, Klaus, 2010. "How bad is globalization for labour standards in the north?," W.E.P. - Würzburg Economic Papers 84, University of Würzburg, Chair for Monetary Policy and International Economics.
    2. Nancy H. Chau & Ravi Kanbur, 2006. "The Race to the Bottom, from the Bottom," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 73(290), pages 193-228, May.
    3. Thierry Baudassé & Rémi Bazillier, 2010. "Migration and Trade Union Rights," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 146(IV), pages 677-707, December.
    4. Drusilla K. Brown & Alan V. Deardorff & Robert M. Stern, 2009. "Pros and Cons of Linking Trade and Labor Standards," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Globalization And International Trade Policies, chapter 16, pages 599-621 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    5. Thomas K. Bauer, 2002. "Migration, Sozialstaat und Zuwanderungspolitik," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 71(2), pages 249-271.
    6. Justina A.V. Fischer & Frank Somogyi, 2009. "Globalization and Protection of Employment," KOF Working papers 09-238, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
    7. Robert Stern, 2003. "Normes de travail et accords commerciaux," Revue d’économie du développement, De Boeck Université, vol. 11(4), pages 125-150.
    8. Chau, Nancy, 2009. "Sweatshop Equilibrium," IZA Discussion Papers 4363, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. repec:ilo:ilowps:369300 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Arslan Razmi, 2009. "Must Improved Labor Standards Hurt Accumulation in the Targeted Sector? Stylized Analysis of a Developing Economy," UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers 2009-09, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics.
    11. Drusilla K. Brown, 2001. "Labor Standards: Where Do They Belong on the International Trade Agenda?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(3), pages 89-112, Summer.
    12. Joshua Hall & Peter Leeson, 2007. "Good for the Goose, Bad for the Gander: International Labor Standards and Comparative Development," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 28(4), pages 658-676, September.
    13. Robert M. Stern & Katherine Terrell, 2003. "Labor Standards and the World Trade Organization," Working Papers 499, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    14. Donado, Alejandro. & Wälde, Klaus., 2012. "Globalization, trade unions and labour standards in the North," ILO Working Papers 994694483402676, International Labour Organization.
    15. Robert M. Stern, 2003. "Labor Standards and Trade Agreements," Working Papers 496, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    16. Christopher Udry, 2003. "Child Labor," Working Papers 856, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
    17. Busse, Matthias, 2002. "Do Labor Standards Affect Comparative Advantage in Developing Countries?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 1921-1932, November.
    18. Niklas Egels-Zandén & Jeroen Merk, 2014. "Private Regulation and Trade Union Rights: Why Codes of Conduct Have Limited Impact on Trade Union Rights," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 123(3), pages 461-473, September.
    19. David Kucera & Ritash Sarna, 2006. "Trade Union Rights, Democracy, and Exports: a Gravity Model Approach," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(5), pages 859-882, November.
    20. Pierre, Gaelle & Scarpetta, Stefano, 2007. "How labor market policies can combine workers'protection with job creation : a partial review of some key issues and policy options," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 41439, The World Bank.
    21. Kucera, David. & Sarn, Ritash., 2004. "How do trade union rights affect trade competitiveness?," ILO Working Papers 993693003402676, International Labour Organization.
    22. Hasnat, Baban, 2002. "The impact of core labour standards on exports," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 11(5), pages 563-575, October.
    23. repec:ilo:ilowps:469448 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. Razmi, Arslan, 2011. "Must improved labor standards hurt accumulation in the targeted sector? Stylized analysis of a developing economy," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 299-312.
    25. Nirvikar Singh, 2004. "The Impact of International Labor Standards: A Survey of Economic Theory," International Trade 0412007, EconWPA.

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